CHICAGO — The Exelon Foundation and Exelon Corporation (Nasdaq: EXC), the nation’s largest generator of carbon-free energy and the only electric and gas utility in the Fortune 100, today launched a new $20 million Climate Change Investment Initiative (2c2i) to cultivate startups working on new technologies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate climate change. The initiative marks the Exelon Foundation’s latest effort to support programs that benefit the environment and adds to Exelon Corp.’s continuing goal to create a clean, next-generation energy grid, utilizing the innovative approach of impact investing to generate a measurable, beneficial impact on climate change.
The Exelon Foundation will contribute $10 million over the next 10 years to fund the initiative, which will focus on clean energy and environmental technologies with potential for wide-scale commercialization. Exelon Corp. will match that grant with up to a $10 million in-kind investment of pro-bono services, including mentoring entrepreneurs on ways to access other sources of capital, structure business plans, allocate financial resources and meet regulatory requirements. The start-ups also will be able to tap the company’s internal innovation programs – Exelorate Growth, Constellation Technology Ventures and Partnership R&D – for counsel.
“Exelon stands with the majority of our customers who want cleaner air and affordable, reliable energy,” said Chris Crane, Exelon CEO and Chairman, Exelon Foundation. “With recent advances in technology, these are no longer mutually exclusive objectives. The Exelon Foundation Climate Change Investment Initiative will put us a step closer to a clean energy future by helping entrepreneurs translate their ideas for reversing climate change into practical solutions.”
The initiative was formally announced at a clean-energy forum hosted by The Climate Group as part of Climate Week NYC. Held annually in conjunction with the UN General Assembly, Climate Week NYC is a joint initiative of the UN and the city of New York that brings together business, government and institutional leaders to discuss climate-change actions.
The initiative will base its search and selection process on the following criteria:
- The startup must be doing work that will benefit one or more of Exelon’s six major urban markets: Atlantic City, Chicago, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and Wilmington, DE.
- Innovations must have potential to either:
- Mitigate greenhouse gas emissions;
- Boost the resiliency of urban infrastructure (e.g., the power grid, transportation systems, buildings, vacant land) against flood, stormwater and rising temperatures;
- Help cities, businesses and communities adapt to climate change; or
- Help achieve a state or city’s specific sustainability and climate goals.
- Minority and women-owned businesses will receive particular consideration.
Applications for the Exelon Climate Change Investment Initiative can be submitted online at www.exelonfoundation.org
. The 2019 submission deadline is October 25. Following initial reviews and finalist presentations, the Exelon Foundation expects to announce its first funded class of entrepreneurs in December, providing $1 million in total funding to eight to 12 seed-stage startups.